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Economy in Brief

U.S. Import and Export Prices Rebound
by Tom Moeller  February 13, 2013

U.S. prices in the foreign trade sector recovered last month following December weakness. Import prices increased 0.6% (-1.3% y/y) after a 0.5% December decline, originally reported as -0.1%. The Action Economics survey looked for prices to rise 0.8%. Petroleum prices led last month's price improvement with a 2.9% recovery (-5.9% y/y) after three months of decline.

Nonpetroleum import prices ticked up 0.1% and were 0.2% higher y/y. Capital goods prices outside of the high-tech area nudged up 0.1% (0.4% y/y) while computers, peripheral & semiconductor costs remained unchanged (-2.2% y/y). Foods, feeds & beverages prices increased 0.5% (-3.6% y/y) while prices for nonauto consumer goods prices gained 0.1% (0.2% y/y). Automotive vehicle costs also ticked up 0.1% (1.5% y/y) but nonoil industrial supplies & material prices were 0.1% lower (+1.3% y/y).

U.S. export prices gained an expected 0.3% (1.1% y/y) in January. Prices were led higher by a 0.8% rise (1.0% y/y) in capital goods prices while motor vehicle & parts prices rose 0.3% (1.0% y/y). These gains were offset by nonauto consumer goods prices which were unchanged (-0.1% y/y). Agricultural product prices fell 1.3% (10.7% y/y).

The import and export price series can be found in Haver's USECON database. Detailed figures are available in the USINT database. The expectations figure is in the AS1REPNA database. 

 

Import/Export Prices (NSA, %) Jan Dec Nov Jan Y/Y 2012 2011 2010
Imports - All Commodities 0.6 -0.5 -0.7 -1.3 0.3 10.9 6.9
  Petroleum 2.9 -2.7 -2.9 -5.9 -0.3 36.5 28.4
  Nonpetroleum 0.1 0.2 -0.1 0.2 0.3 4.5 2.8
Exports - All Commodities 0.3 -0.1 -0.6 1.1 0.4 8.1 4.9
  Agricultural -1.3 0.2 0.5 10.7 2.4 22.3 7.9
  Nonagricultural 0.5 -0.2 -0.7 0.0 0.1 6.6 4.6
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